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Monday May 10, 2010 9:57 pm

Lidstrom to contemplate retirement




Posted by Adrien Griffin Categories: Athletes, NHL, Rumors,

Nicklas LidstromAfter 19 years in Detroit, is Nicklas Lidstrom finally ready to call it a career? With the Red Wings’ elimination from the playoffs on Saturday night, another season came to a close for the Swedish defenseman, and at 40 year old, some are wondering if there’s anything left in the tank for the All-Star blue-liner. Should he ride off into the sunset after a disappointing second-round exit, or should extend him career for one more year to try to lead the Wings and prove their dynasty is not dead?

Lidstrom has won four Stanley Cups with Detroit. He also has won the Norris Trophy six times for being the best all-around defenseman and has won the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2002. He has never played less than 76 games in a season, except the shortened 1994-95 season, when he played in 43 out of 48 games. In 1,412 regular season games, Lidstrom has 237 goals and 1,046 points. He’s added another 50 goals and 175 points in 247 playoff games.
Few players spend half as many years with one team as Lidstrom has with Detroit. If he wants to tie up his skates for one more season, Detroit should be more than willing to give him his jersey with the “C” and his number 5 all over it. They may offer him a reduced pay from what he’s made in previous years, but that won’t come as a shock to anybody. How much it’s reduced by may be, but in honor of all he’s given to the franchise, they should be careful not to offer an insulting seven-figure number.

Yes, Lidstrom is old, and he’s only getting older, but he’s only a year removed from being selected as an All-Star. It’s difficult to think that a future Hall of Famer’s skill will decline so much to the point that his value as a player won’t be worth it come next season. The Red Wings need to get younger, but Lidstrom is not the player to let go as a start. If Lidstrom asks to return to Hockeytown for 2010-11, the Wings would be well-served to welcome him back with open arms.

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